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Fisheries Watchdog Serious About Uniforms

The Federal Fisheries Agency will consult the U.S. company Alpha Industries and the Russian celebrity designer Valentin Yudashkin on designs for its new uniforms, the watchdog said Tuesday, Interfax reported.

Alpha Industries makes uniforms for the U.S. army at its Chinese facilities. Yudashkin co-designed new outfits for the Russian Army in 2008.

The fisheries agency, which has a staff of 4,500, has not had proper uniforms since Soviet times, but will get them in 2012, an organization spokesman said.

He did not specify how much the new uniforms will cost the state, but Izvestia estimated expenses at 113 million rubles ($4 million). The newspaper added that Yudashkin worked for free.

Fisheries inspectors are also issued firearms, starting Monday, to make the task of chasing poachers safer, Interfax said. Izvestia reported that the agency is also getting a new emblem, which depicts intersecting sturgeon and salmon with anchors in the background.

Meanwhile, the Investigative Committee said Tuesday that it has finished an investigation of two agency officials charged with extorting a bribe of 10 million rubles for aborting the inspection of a fishing company.

The story made headlines last year after one of the suspects tossed the bribe from a car window onto busy Varshavskoye Shosse in southern Moscow while trying to flee from police. About 1 million rubles went missing, though officials managed to retrieve the rest of the money, which, unbeknown to the suspects, was marked.

No date was set for a hearing. The suspects face up to 10 years in prison on attempted fraud charges.

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